US Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Robert Ford, age 41, of Pipestone, Minnesota, was found guilty by a federal jury of kidnaping by confinement. Ford was indicted on December 6, 2011. The maximum penalty upon conviction is life imprisonment.
An investigation into a report of sexual assault led to the charge. A female resident of Flandreau and member of the Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe had been taken to the hospital after having been assaulted and confined in the bedroom of her own house on tribal land. The 37-year-old victim reported that Robert Ford assaulted her and barricaded the door, preventing her from leaving. Ford fled the scene after other residents in the home heard sounds of a struggle.
The investigation was conducted by the Flandreau Police Department and the FBI . The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper. A presentence investigation was ordered, and a sentencing date has not yet been set. The defendant was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals pending sentencing.